Publication date: 06/01/2012
The Sustainable Agriculture Network is proud to announce the achievement of two important milestones through the implementation of its farm and group certification standards. As of August 2011, more than one million hectares and 200,000 operations have received Rainforest Alliance certification. Total certified hectares represent those under agricultural production as well as farmlands designated for conservation. The good practices adopted by producers whose farms achieve certification mean smarter farming, the conservation of natural resources and the protection of wildlife and workers´ rights.
This achievement reflects the long-standing commitment of the Network´s eight partner organizations which have worked together for more than two decades to develop, promote and support the implementation of the rigorous SAN standards. The SAN members could not have reached this milestone without the support of more than a million farmers and farm workers, who made the improvements to meet the standards, investing precious resources in the future of their farms, communities and the conservation of natural resources that will support future generations.
Since the birth of the SAN standards-setting initiatives in the late 1980s, the certification program has not only expanded the volume of certified hectares around the globe, but also the diversity of crops represented and the breadth of tropical producer regions where the program makes important impacts in biodiversity and sustainable farming practices. The program is currently active in over 30 countries and 25 different crops, represented in farms throughout Latin America, Africa, Asia, the Caribbean and the United States. Hundreds of companies worldwide buy and sell Rainforest Alliance CertifiedTM products and demand continues to grow as it is now widely accepted that sustainability is smart business.
As the SAN celebrates these achievements, it is also helping farmers learn to produce more with less, improve crop quality, adapt to climate change, better conserve biodiversity and other natural resources, and strengthen rural communities.
The SAN is continually updating the farm-management guidelines, learning from farmers and integrating the latest science with traditional knowledge. The SAN is also expanding its certification capacity which will create improved access to certification services through an expanded network of accredited certifiers backed by industry standards to ensure certification service quality. The SAN is also exploring new frontiers during the first implementations of its Standard for Sustainable Cattle Production Systems.
Stay tuned to the SAN website for additional announcements about these developments in the coming months.